Warren on Rochester's sanctuary city status: "We will continue"

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Mayor Lovely Warren affirmed Rochester's status as a sanctuary city Thursday in the face of Attorney General Jeff Session's announcement of a lawsuit against the state of California. (WHAM photo)

Rochester, N.Y. (WHAM) - As Attorney General Jeff Sessions stopped in California Thursday, peaceful protestors decried his lawsuit against the state.

Sessions announced the Department of Justice is suing over policies that it claims prohibit some cooperation with federal immigration enforcement.

Calfornia governor Jerry Brown called the lawsuit a "political stunt."

The City of Rochester is designated as a sanctuary city. City Council voted in February 2017 to reaffirm the city's status. Mayor Lovely Warren argues the city is protecting the interests of its residents.

"Our country is built on the fact of people being given the opportunity to live the American dream and to come here and be able to be educated here and be able to take care of their families here," Warren said Thursday. "We're going to continue to push for every Rochesterian to be proud of the city that we live in and to realize that we will do everything possible so that they can have to opportunities that everyone else in this country has."

Department of Justice officials have said they are not ruling out the possibility of suing other local governments with sanctuary laws, or pursuing criminal charges against other politicians they believe are interfering with the federal government's immigration authority.